A Summary of the Sports Medicine Fellowship Curriculum 

The UVA primary care sports medicine fellowship program is designed to train a primary care specialist to the unique needs of individuals involved in sports and exercise in conjunction with developing future academic leaders and sports clinicians.  The fellowship program will be comprised of an intensive 1-year curriculum.

The fellowship will consist of 6 major curricular components:

  1. Ambulatory sports medicine care.
  2. Team physician responsibilities at the high school and collegiate level.
  3. Didactics.
  4. Operative orthopedic surgery.
  5. Continuity clinic in base residency training track (Fam Med, PM&R, IM, ED).
  6. MSK Ultrasound.

The goal of the ambulatory sports medicine clinic is to assist the fellow in acquiring the skills and knowledge commensurate with that of a primary care sports medicine specialist. Specifically, the clinic provides the fellow with deep rooted practice with pre-participation examinations, exercise prescription, medical problems related to exercise participation, and ambulatory orthopedics. The fellow is also expected to acquire the following skills: joint aspiration and injection; orthotic fabrication; shoeware analysis; video gait analysis; proper utilization of bracing; exercising stress testing; compartment pressure testing, and submaximal VO2 testing. In addition, the fellow will function as a clinical teacher to medical students and residents rotating on the sports medicine service.

The team physician exposure directly places the fellow in the role of a team physician. Each fellow will be assigned a high school where (s)he will function as the principal team physician. In addition, the fellow will be assigned to a UVA athletic team to function as the assistant team physician. These exposures will allow the fellow to participate in pre-participation examinations, acute injury management, event coverage and return to play decision making all the while developing longitudinal relationships with the athletes and involved staff. The return-to-play decision making process will provide valuable experience to the fellow in the unique interactions that occur between athletes, coaches, athletic trainers and parents.

The didactic curriculum serves a joint purpose of providing the fellow with a broader knowledge base of primary care sports medicine as well as preparing the fellow to function as a future clinician-educator in an academic setting. The didactic curriculum will be taught according to the favored learning style of the fellow- either as a formal block of instruction or more informally with lectures according to patient injury presentation.

The operative orthopedic experience is designed to give the fellow direct exposure as a first assistant in the operating room. This experience is supplemented by two weekly half-day clinics with an orthopedic surgeon to assist the fellow in acquiring superior orthopedic skills, increase knowledge of pertinent clinical anatomy, improve skill in the use and interpretation of diagnostic imaging, and learn indications for surgical interventions. This rotation allows the resident to build a team-oriented relationship with our fantastic and welcoming orthopedic surgeons.

UVA’s ultrasound curriculum provides the fellow with a full breadth of diagnostic scanning and injection-based procedures. The schedule includes multiple longitudinal learning experiences. The fellow will attend a formal ultrasound course in the fall which includes didactics and hands-on scanning. It concludes with a tremendously well-received two day cadaver course. Throughout the year, the fellow will work in dedicated ultrasound clinics in physical medicine and rehabilitation, family medicine and the athletic training room.  These different clinics will expose the fellow to a diverse patient population ranging from the young athlete to the retired housekeeper. This curriculum with provide the fellow the foundation to become certified in musculoskeletal ultrasound.